Six Month Paleo Anniversary
If you’ve read my story on Robb Wolf’s site then you’ve heard all of this. If not…
In the fall of 2009 I got very sick. On Christmas day 2009 I nearly died. Over the next few months I had dozens of visits to the hospital, the lab, my PCP, and my GI specialist and all they could tell me was that I was suffering from something auto-immune related. The only two hard pieces of evidence that I had were the knowledge that my C reactive protein was a 12.04 and my stomach was emptying it’s contents at half the normal rate. Eventually everyone had washed their hands of me and in March 2010 “handed me off” to a rheumatologist. Unfortunately, they couldn’t see me for six weeks. Well, I wasn’t just going to wait around for six weeks while Death loomed over my shoulder. I had to do something.
I knew that it was something auto-immune so I started there. When I had eliminated every AI disease that didn’t fit my symptoms I was left with Celiac. I was tested and while waiting for the results went wheat free. Over the three day period as I waited for the results I noticed that I felt…better. I was surprised when the tests came back negative, but I hadn’t stopped doing my research so I knew that you didn’t have to be intolerant to gluten to be sensitive to it. My GI doctor (who kindly did the celiac test at my request) suggested that I maintain my wheat-free diet (which was already my plan) and suggested that we re-do the CRP after two weeks. Within 5 days I came off of all the meds I had been taking to make my stomach work properly (a handful with every meal). At the ten day mark we redid my CRP and it was down to 8.47. A month after that it was 6.8. Bingo.
It only took two months for me to realize that wheat wasn’t the only devil in my diet. I had to eliminate rice and, shortly afterwards, sugar followed suit. I still had an enormous amount of visible swelling in my lower legs, ankles, and feet, however, so I knew there was more to the picture than I was seeing.
In late summer/early fall of 2010, Robb Wolf’s “The Paleo Solution” was finally available for purchase. I tore through it and began my Paleo journey on September 27, 2010. I haven’t looked back.
Within three weeks my auto-immune symptoms were GONE. No more gut agony, no more excruciating migraines, no more joint pain. I was ecstatic. The big surprise was that I was able to come off of all of my allergy meds at the same time. BONUS! The only thing I had to continue taking was my acid reflux meds and considering the amount of damage my gut had endured, I was not surprised.
Well, here I am six months later. No more inflammation. My last CRP was a 0.9. All meds are history. The only pills I take now are fish oil, magnesium, Vitamin D3, and potassium. At the beginning of the year I challenged myself to add Intermittent Fasting to the mix. Most days I fast between 16 and 24 hours. I eat when I’m hungry. For the most part that is only once or twice a day. I’ve lost a total of 66 pounds.
The calorie counters can scream all they want that I’m on a calorie restricted diet and that’s why I’m losing weight, but I know better. I may have a very low calorie intake, but if you look at the foods that I eat they are DENSE in nutrients and HIGH in satiating fat and protein. This combination guarantees that I can eat very little, lose weight, and STILL not be hungry.
When I do get hungry, I eat. If I get cravings, I give in. I can listen to my body now and know that it is giving me accurate information because it is no longer confused by the leptin desensitization of grain consumption. I love my Paleo life and I cannot imagine eating any other way again. I read and I network to fuel my Paleo fire. I challenge myself to learn more about nutrition and fitness. There is nothing I will not do to further my health and longevity. I may not live forever, but living a Paleo life is going ensure that I live as long as I can. I got lucky on Christmas day, 2009. I got a second chance at life. I think I have an obligation to squeeze every second I can out of this life and I plan to savor every moment of it.